Friday, October 31, 2014

Answer #3 - Rotation

I have gotten this question multiple times so no specific credit to be given on this one.

How do you do your rotation?

Over the last year, I've finally gotten my rotation "tweaked" to perfection - for me at least.  ;-)

I pick one project to be my main focus.  My current focus project is La Belle Dame Sans Merci.  The reason that I have a focus piece is so that I actually get a finish!  As you can tell by my list below, I tend to do LARGE projects!  La Belle... has 40 pages to the pattern!  Okay, the 8th page/row and the entire bottom row aren't full pages but still.


Then I have all my other WIPs:

PTP Floral Arrangement - HAED
Rapunzel (Dawe) - HAED
The Sistine Chapel - HAED
God Speed - HAED
Floral Finesse - The Heart's Content
Heirloom Nativity Sampler - The Victoria Sampler - I have everything ready, just need to put the fabric in the scroll frame

Normally, I would have 8 projects listed in my rotation, but I put an ornament on my 8th scroll frame and I work on it while watching football (American, specifically the Seattle Seahawks) games.

Since La Belle... is my focus piece, I work on it every other time I rotate.  My most recent switches were:

La Belle...
God Speed
La Belle...
The Sistine Chapel

The way I choose what to work on between bouts of La Belle... involves an app.  Yes, there is an app for that!  I have an iPad, and the app I use is called Random Master.  I made a list in the app of all my WIPs except La Belle because I know when I will be working on that one. When I finish a round with La Belle..., I have the app select a random item from my remaining WIPs.  The app keeps track of what it has been selected previously and won't select the same ones again until all of the others have had a turn.  That's great because it gives me some randomness in my rotation but still makes sure that ALL of the items get worked on equally!

Now regarding how much time I spend on each project.  All of the HAEDs get worked on until I finish a page.  If there is a page that is smaller than a full page, I will sometimes do that at the same time.  For instance, on La Belle... the pattern is 8 pages wide but the 8th page in each row is only 33 stitches wide.  Normal pages are 77-80 stitches.  When I got to page 7 on the top row, I also stitched page 8 as part of my "page".

For my non-HAED projects, it can be a bit different how much I choose to do.  For Heirloom Nativity, I will probably do as many bands of the pattern I can until I need to roll the fabric in the frame.  That seemed to work well when I was doing the Heirloom Christmas Sampler.  When I'm working on Floral Finesse, it will probably also be a case of finish one page and move on.  I do know that the first 3 pages will be an exception.  They are all quite small and all use the same color key, so I'll do them as a single session.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

FREE Quilting Block of the Week!!

Oooh, I just found a very cool free block of the week program called Women of the Bible.  If you sign up for the store's newsletter in the next day or two, you might still get in on the first week.  All information is available by clicking on the Women of the Bible link above.

Each week, you get a link for two quilt blocks.  Each block represents a woman from the Bible and has a short devotional.  The first week showcased Eve and Rachel.

In total, there are 40 blocks.  If you miss out on any of the blocks, they are offering a CD after the program is over, for $10.

Happy Stitching!

Stacy


Saturday, October 18, 2014

Online Needlework Show - My Finds

Here are the items that I found that I really liked in the online needlework show.


Village from Blu Cobalto


















Poinsettia Star from Fab Reilly Designs

















Christmastide from Erica Michaels Designs













Obviously, I have a Winter/Christmas fetish.  These are the only ones I found really interesting.  I've found that I've become quite picky and I won't even consider something I can't see myself actually stitching.  There were quite a few more that made me pause and think but these were the ones that "made the cut". 

Happy Stitching!

Stacy

Friday, October 17, 2014

Online Needlework Show!

Hey Everyone!

The online needlework show has started!

I've always wanted to attend a needlework show but they are usually so far away from me that I can't afford to get to them, let alone have any money to spend on goodies.

The online needlework show is the next best thing.  You get to see all the new stuff and you can be comfy in your jammies while you do it.    When you go to the website, under Viewing, select General and then browse to your heart's content.

After I've viewed the whole show, I'll share what I've found to get me excited!

Happy Stitching and Browsing!

Stacy

Monday, October 6, 2014

Empty Scroll Frames

(Gasp).  I know, it's almost a sin to have empty scroll frames isn't it?  I must really be sinning 'cause I have 3 empty at the moment.  Oh, wait, I just put an ornament on one so that means I'm not quite so evil with only 2 empties.  ;-)

I've been considering what to add to my rotation.  Part of the decision has already been made because I have one wide and one narrow frame available.  For the narrow frame, I've already decided to do Heirloom Nativity Sampler from Victoria Sampler.  I bought the thread packs for this when I bought the pattern, so I know I have everything I need.

For the wider frame, I'm considering doing this:


This is Floral Finesse from The Heart's Content.  It uses 390 DMC colors.  When it came out, that was every color available!

I've had this pattern for awhile.  After all the work I've put into my HAEDs, I know I'm comfortable working over one so that's not an issue.  I don't think I'll use white fabric though.  I'm thinking more ivory.  If I dig through my stash and find a dark blue though, I might use that.

Well, the Seattle Seahawks game is almost ready to start, so I have to go!

Happy Stitching!

Stacy

Answer #2 - Floss coverage

Leonore asked:

"I have one, actually...I remembered you saying something about 25ct over one and coverage, so I went aaaall the way back to read it again (it was with Carla's questions on HAED) and since I'm currently trying to decide what count and over one ore two I should do for my first really big project, I wanted to ask if you could talk a bit about that and possible show some closeups of both God Speed and La Belle Dame for comparison?"

This is a very good question!

There are a couple of things to consider.  Does the pattern have a lot of black (or equally dark color)? Are you going to be stitching on a light colored material?  Remember this is going to be an issue in reverse too (light colors on a dark fabric).

Both my La Belle Dame...(LBD) and God Speed (GS) use quite a bit of black.  LBD has 84,226 stitches in black and GS has 34,036.  Okay, that's more than I thought...dang, that's a lot of black!

On LBD, I had already done one re-start of it so when I decided to stick with 1 strand over 1 thread (1x1), there was no way I was going to re-start again.  There are bits of the fabric that show through but you do have to be fairly close to the project to see that.

With GS, I had already been working on LBD 1x1, so I decided to do 2 strands over 1.  The coverage on 25ct. 2x1 is excellent!  Not a trace of the fabric showing through.  The downside to this is that it is more difficult to actually get the needle and floss through the fabric once you are working where there are already surrounding stitches.  Yes, I do use a larger needle to help open up the holes a bit but with anywhere from 2-6 strands of floss already claiming the hole as theirs', there is a bit of a fight.

Here are a couple of closeups to help show what I mean:


Personally, I won't be using 25ct. again for any project, HAED or otherwise.  I just don't care for it.  I prefer 28ct. and higher. 

I don't have a closeup shot of it, but the Twilight Repose that I did was on 28ct. 1x1.  The coverage was great!  The fabric on that one was Ivory and it is 100% stitched.  So with all of that 924 used for the background, that's all you see:  924.


My current WIPs and the pertinent information are:
 All of these are on ivory or natural fabrics.

Happy Stitching!

Stacy

Answer #1 - Cutting in Hardanger

Carla asked:
"I will be doing some fancy stitching on TW's "Tea Scene" that requires some cutting, I would really like to see how you have figured this out please."


Carla,

Hopefully, the pattern has lines indicating where you should cut the threads.  For the actual cutting, you'll want some small, sharp scissors that will fit easily in the holes of the fabric.  I think the scissors that I use are manicure scissors.  If there is a lot of cutting, like on the photo below, you will need to take a break because your hands will probably start to ache.  Well, at least my hands did.  I have fairly large hands and those are such tiny scissors, my hands hurt from holding the scissors rather than the actual cutting.

For a good tutorial on Hardanger, you can go here.  There is a great diagram showing where the cutting lines should be. 

Here is one of my completed projects that has quite a bit of cutting in it:


This pattern is from the booked Stitched Elegance: Enhanced with Hardanger from Stoney Creek.

Happy Stitching!

Stacy

La Belle Dame...progress photo

Another page bites the dust!  Having this as my focus piece is very cool.  Watching this come to life is fascinating.  Since it is my focus piece, I'm getting to see progress much more quickly!

Here's a picture after finishing page 12:






The knight now has part of his arm!  Poor guy has to wait until my next rotation to get any more of his body done.  Don't forget, if you click on the photo, you can view a much larger version!

Up next in my rotation:  The Sistine Chapel.

Oh, look for the start of my "Answer" series probably later today.

Happy Stitching!

Stacy

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Questions?

Hi Everyone!

I've been reading through the comments on some of my previous posts and was wondering if anyone had any questions they would like to ask me about my stitching?

I know there are already a couple:  one about how I handle my rotation, and another about doing the cutting in Hardanger.

All of my readers have been so lovely to me, I thought I'd try to "give back" by sharing any information that I can about our shared crafts.

Anyone who wants to submit a question for me can email me or just post it as a comment.

Happy Stitching!

Stacy